Indian Revenue service

This query is : Resolved 

08 November 2007

Hi All, M currently completing my graduation and doing c a alongwith it. I intend to appear for Indian Revenue Services (IRS) after my PCC... Can anybody please give me full details about the course ?? and the prospects, selection criteria and other vital info ??

Late CA Sampat Jain (Expert)
08 November 2007

The Civil Services Examination is conducted by UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) every year.
The examination has three stages i.e.,
(1) Civil Services Preliminary Examinations (CSP) - normally conducted during the second half of May.
(2) Civil Services (Main) Examinations conducted during the month of October/November. Here, those who are selected in the preliminary examination only are eligible to appear.
(3) Those who are selected in the main examination will be eligible to appear before the Interview Board at New Delhi.

Preliminary Examination (CSP)
CSP consists of two papers i.e., (1) optional subject to be selected from the listed subject for 300 marks. (2) General studies for 150 marks. Total of 450 marks. Each paper is of two hours duration. The course content of the syllabi for the optional subjects is at the degree level. Normally, there are about 3 lakh applications for the preliminary examination. From this, the UPSC selects 10 to 12 folds of vacancies for the main examinations. This is only for the selection and not to be taken into consideration in the main ranking.

Subjects for Preliminary Examination: The General Studies syllabus is same for all.

Subjects for Paper II (one subject to be selected): Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science, Botany, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Commerce, Economics, Electrical Engineering, Geography, Geology, Indian History, Law, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Medical Science, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Public Administration, Sociology, Statistics, Zoology.

(The question papers are in Hindi and English and each paper is of two hours duration. The course content of the syllabi is of degree level. Each paper is of two hours duration. Blind candidates are allowed an extra time of 20 minutes for each paper.)

Main Examination
Only those who are declared by the Commission to have qualified in the Preliminary Examination in a year, are eligible for the Main examination of that year, provided they are otherwise eligible for the Main Examination.

Civil Services Main examination has two optional subjects (two papers each carries 300 marks), one General Studies (two papers each carries 300 marks), one essay (carries 200 marks) - total 2000 marks. Other than this, there are two language papers one in Indian language and one in General English at the level of 10th standard. This is to test the ability of the candidate's proficiency in his mother tongue / Indian language and English. Total nine papers. These two papers carry 300 marks each but it will not be considered for the ranking. It is must to clear these two papers. If a candidate fails to clear these papers, his other papers will not be evaluated.

The Main Examination is intended to assess the overall intellectual traits and the depth of understanding of the candidates, rather than merely the range of their information and memory. Sufficient choice of questions is allowed in the question papers.

Optional Subjects for the Main Examination:
Optional subjects: Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science, Botany, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Commerce and Accountancy, Economics, Electrical Engineering, Geography, Geology, History, Law, Management, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Medical Science, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science and International Relations, Psychology, Public Administration, Sociology, Statistics, Zoology. Each paper is of 3 hours duration.

Arabic, Assamese, Bengali, Chinese, English, French, German, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Marathi, Malayalam, Manipuri, Nepali, Oriya, Pali, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu.
The following combinations not allowed are:
Political Science & International Relations and Public Administration
Commerce and Management
Anthropology and Sociology
Maths and Statistics
Agriculture and Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science
Management and Public Administration
Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science and Medical Science
Any two branches of engineering.
Combination of two literatures in the above list.

At interview stage, two-fold vacancies are called to appear before the UPSC Board. Interview carries 300 marks. Interview calls are sent on the basis of minimum marks fixed by the UPSC at its discretion. The overall ranking is done based on the Mains performance (i.e., 2000 marks) and interview. Therefore, the total marks involved in the ranking are 2300. Candidates are allotted various services keeping in view their ranks in the examination and preferences given by them in their main application form.

Note: If a person fails in either in mains or interview, he has to appear once again from the preliminary stage.

Eligibility Conditions:

(i) Nationality:
(1) For the Indian Administrative Service and the Indian Police Service, a candidate must be a citizen of India.
(2) For other services, a candidate must be either:
(a) A citizen of India, or
(b) a subject of Nepal, or
(c) a subject of Bhutan, or
(d) a Tibetan refugee who came over to India before 1st January, 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India. or
(e) a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Srilanka, East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia and Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.
Provided that a candidate belonging to categories (b), (c), (d) and (e) shall be a person in whose favour a certificate of eligibility has been issued by the Government of India.
Provided further that candidates belonging to categories (b), (c) and (d) above will not be eligible for appointment to the Indian Foreign Service.
A candidate, in whose case a certificate of eligibility is necessary, may be admitted to the examination but the offer of appointment may be given only after the necessary eligibility certificate has been issued to him by the Government of India.

(ii) Minimum Educational Qualifications:
The candidate must hold a degree of any of Universities incorporated by an Act of the Central or State Legislature in India or other educational institutions established by an Act of Parliament or declared to be deemed as a University Under Section 3 of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification.

Note I: Candidates who have appeared at an examination the passing of which would render them educationally qualified for the Commission's examination but have not been informed of the results as also the candidates who intend to appear at such a qualifying examination will also be eligible for admission to the Preliminary Examination. All candidates who are declared qualified by the Commission for taking the Civil Services (Main) Examination will be required to produce proof of passing the requisite examination with their application for the Main Examination failing which such candidates will not be admitted to the Main Examination.

Note II: In exceptional cases the Union Public Service Commission may treat a candidate who has not any of the foregoing qualifications as a qualified candidate provided that he has passed examination conducted by the other Institutions, the standard of which in the opinion of the Commission justifies his admission to the examination.

Note III: Candidates possessing professional and technical qualifications, which are recognised by Government, as equivalent to professional and technical degree would also be eligible for admission to the examination.

Note IV: Candidates who have passed the final professional M.B.B.S. or any other Medical Examination but have not completed their internship by the time of submission of their applications for the Civil Services (Main) Examination, will be provisionally admitted to the Examination provided they submit along with their application a copy of certificate from the concerned authority of the University/Institution that they had passed the requisite final professional medical examination. In such cases, the candidates will be required to produce at the time of their interview original Degree or a certificate from the concerned competent authority of the University/Institution that they had completed all requirements (including completion of internship) for the award of the Degree.

(iii) Age limit: 21 years must be completed on 1st August of the year, which a candidate is appearing. Maximum 30 for general category, 33 for OBCs and 35 for SCs/STs. Ex-servicemen will get 5 more years exemption from the prescribed age limit.

(The date of birth accepted by the Commission is that entered in the Matriculation or Secondary School Leaving Certificate or in a certificate recognised by an Indian University as equivalent to Matriculation or in an extract from a Register of Matriculates maintained by a University, which extract must be certified by the proper authority of the University or in the Higher Secondary or an equivalent examination certificate).

(iv) Number of Attempts: Four attempts for open, seven for OBCs and no limit for SCs/STs. If a person appears in the Preliminary Examination or even one paper is counted as an attempt.

(v) Restrictions on applying for the examination:
A candidate who is appointed to the Indian Administrative Service or the Indian Foreign Service on the results of an earlier examination and continues to be a member of that service will not be eligible to compete at this examination.

How to Apply:
(a) The UPSC have developed an application form common for all their examinations, which will be processed on computerised machines. This application form alongwith an Information Brochure containing general instructions for filling up the form, an acknowledgement card and an envelope for sending the application is obtainable from the designated Head Post Offices/Post Offices throughout the country as against cash payment of Rs. 20/- (Rupees twenty only). Form should be purchased from the designated Post Offices only and not from any other agency. This form can be used only once and for only one examination. Candidates must use the form supplied with the Information Brochure only and they should in no case use photocopy / reproduction / unauthorisedly printed copy of the Form. Since this form is electronically scannable, due care should be taken to fill up the application form, correctly. While filling up the application form, please refer to detailed instructions given in the Notice.

Late CA Sampat Jain (Expert)
08 November 2007

- Few words from successful candidates
Planned studies, hard work and inner motivation are the keys to success.
Strong willpower and faith in God are keys to success.
Hard work, focused approach and faith in God are stepping-stones to success.
Hard work, good planning and positive approach.
Dedication, time management and hard work are secrets of success.
Self-confidence, planning and systematic study are stepping-stones to success.
Motivation and confidence are the keys to success.
Determination, positive attitude - key to success.
Patience, selection of optionals, hard work and good luck.

Remember that there is no substitute to hard work. No one will come and help you. You have to finish the entire course by yourself. Civil Service competition is like a marathon race. For that any competitive examination/even this whole world is a competitive world. The aspirants of civil services are well educated and more than 50 per cent of the candidates are serious ones. One, who has the confidence that he can compete in this examination and succeed, only will appear. UPSC statistics also reveals that around 50% of the total applicants only appear in the Preliminary exam.

Among the 50 per cent of the serious candidates, more than 20 per cent are hard workers, i.e. more than 50, 000 candidates are competing, who are really hard working. There are hardly 400 posts in all. So, to make it to the 400, one has to be really put in real hard work, good writing skills, unique style all put together. It is not a university examination. One who puts in extra hard work, practice, and unique presentation only will succeed i.e. be among the top 400. So all successful candidates say the hard work one of the first pre-requisites for the success.

There is no short cut to success and hard work never goes unrewarded. There are many ups and downs during the course of preparation. It is the "downs" which need to be tackled more vigorously and skillfully - more so at the emotional and psychological level. Remember these lines - "what you build for years, may be broken down in a single moment - build anyway".

Dedication towards your duty always pays in life. Be totally dedicated and focused in your studies. You have to sacrifice something like movies, parties, and entertainments etc at this stage of your life to achieve bigger things. Just work day in and day out and go on and on. As told in the previous topic, one should have dedication towards the goal otherwise it is very difficult to achieve. Select standard study books/preparation of notes, as reading is the only entertainment you should have during this period.

As the CSE preparation spans a minimum of one year, right from the Preliminary stage to the interview state, it requires a lot of patience to maintain your tempo. At times you may feel tired and sick of further studying during the course of your preparation. Maintain your cool and patience and so on to break the monotony of studies. Talk to friends and parents. They will provide with you with the much-needed emotional support. Every aspirant tries to top in the first attempt itself. If you don't get through, don't get frustrated. Don't slow down your tempo and at the same time you should keep patience for another year to reap the fruits of success. So one should not lose patience and the tempo throughout the preparation period till success.

Your self-confidence can make the difference. If you don't believe in yourself and your capacity to achieve then, no matter how hard you try. You will end up failing. So your self-confidence should be at an all time high - always. You should be in the company of people, who can increase your motivational levels high and can inspire you. Form a group of close friends, who are as determined as you are to make it to the Civil Services Examination. Keep good friends, they are always a source of inspiration and motivation.

Most of the candidates who have passed/cleared/topped the Civil Services add this as a major key to success. Why everyone says this has a reason behind it. The unforeseen reasons are listed below:
Normally, candidates accept a standard formula, of what was once said of Einstein - "Genius is 90 per cent perspiration and 10 per cent inspiration". Some may say that it is 99 per cent hard work and 1 per cent luck. It is like jumping into a well. Whether it is 90 per cent or 99 per cent, one will fall into the well only. What are the factors for the 1- 10 per cent variation varies from person to person.
It often happens that one studies all subjects well enough, except one small topic, as he/she might have thought that the topic is well known to him/her. The question in the examination may appear from that topic itself. The aspirant may not be able to answer the question satisfactorily, but he has only this much under his/her control.
Sometime in Prelims, unknowingly, candidates mark the wrong option though they know the answer. It is a mental mistake. The aspirant should have been more alert. Hence, mental alertness is of essence. This also is a faculty under the candidate's control. In Prelims, if you are in doubt, you are bound to get confused between two similar options. Hence, comprehend the question carefully and do not rule out any option till you have balanced each option carefully in the context of the question.
Coming to Mains, you have nine papers. Leave the language papers as they are of a qualifying nature and are not going to be added on to the scores of the Mains examination. Moreover, language is not something that can be prepared overnight. Just keep reading newspapers and magazines regularly. Other seven papers are going to be different in nature.
Though the key is given by UPSC, it is not sure whether the evaluator will award the same marks for same points to different students.
One evaluator may like Mr. A's style, but the same may not like Mr. B's answer, though the points are the same, but the style of presentation is different.
The Mains evaluator is also a human being; he may not always behave in the same manner to award the same marks. The evaluator is not a machine, which will behave in a similar fashion and is in the same mood all the time.
The mentality and the mood of the evaluator also play a crucial role at the time of the correction of the paper.
All seven papers go to different personalities and the caliber of evaluators are also not the same.
One person does not evaluate all the papers. Different evaluators from different background evaluate the same subject. There may be lenient and tough people are also there in the same lot. Suppose if an evaluator is a little liberal to give one mark extra for one question. All the papers put together will add another 30 marks more for the candidate which can make a world of difference indeed to your final standing in the merit list. In such types of competition, even one mark can make the difference.
At the interview stage too, the board chairman and members with different backgrounds sit in the board. It is impossible to award the same number of marks to a person in two different boards. Here the question posed, timing, board members play a crucial role.
30-40 minutes of an interview is not the best way to judge the caliber of a student.
At times, familiar questions which sound interesting to the candidate might be asked which will definitely give an edge to the candidate. At other times, even good answers can't be articulated well by the candidate before the board.
There are well known cases where the candidate was given different marks, which varied in 100s from one exam to the other. One person got 210/300 marks in the first attempt, the same person got 150/300 in the interview in the very next attempt. What can be the conclusion? Do we conclude that the same person got worse over a period of one year? No, here the questions posed to him are entirely different from those posed in the previous year.
Above all, during the examination one should keep sound health. Though it may be under your control, certain things are beyond one's control. This may mar the chances of success of the candidate.
For the above reasons, candidates use to say that by luck/God's grace also plays a major role. They above-mentioned factors should also play in one's favour for huge success in this competitive world. The conclusion is that you shouldn't worry if you face failure. There are uncontrollable factors, which also play with us without our knowledge, so do hard work and extra hard work and leave the rest to the Almighty.
Still, remember there is no alternative to hard work. And also believe that God is on your side and go ahead with full determination and intelligent study and practice, which will bring success to you.

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